Yesterday I read a blog post about a woman who was diagnosed with cancer while she was in the hospital delivering her baby girl. Then a few months later after rounds of chemotherapy, she was finally cancer-free... and her baby girl died in her sleep.
I read the story with a sinking heart. I couldn't even begin to grasp how horrible that would be. Why isn't life fair? I resolved that I wouldn't complain about my stupid teeny tiny little problems anymore, because someone else out there has it way harder than I do.
And then last night I stumbled upon a blog post written by a woman whose baby died when she was around 37 weeks pregnant and how she had to deliver that stillborn baby. My eyes glazed over with tears as I read the story, making it difficult for me to get from word to word through my warped vision. And when I finished the story, I broke down into full on sobs.
Why do things like that happen to people?
I'd been planning to write a post about my postpartum feelings on my emergency csection soon. How difficult it is sometimes to look back on my experience and not feel like a failure. How I project judgmental feelings onto others, convincing myself that they think I'm less of a woman because I wasn't able to deliver my baby vaginally.
But then I read those stories. And now? My post is very different.
I am so incredibly full of gratitude for my experience, for my life, and for my baby.
My csection was beautiful because it brought to me my baby boy. And it doesn't matter one tiny speck of an ounce that he didn't come out "the normal way." The fact is, he came out. Alive. Thriving. Kicking and wiggling and peeing everywhere. His tiny fingers wrapped tight around mine. He latched right on to nurse. He snuggled into the comfort of my arms. His cheeks were warm and plump for me to cover in gentle kisses.
He's healthy. He's safe. He's growing and learning and getting more beautiful every day.
I am so insanely blessed. How he got here doesn't even matter. What matters is that he got here.
I've been giving him extra kisses, extra hugs, and extra "I love you"s today. I've been marveling over the intense blue of his eyes, loving the way his smile cuts through those chubby cheeks, and rejoicing in the way his little body moves.
Sometimes it takes someone else's tragedy to show us how much we have been blessed. I don't want to take anything for granted.
I'm just going to leave this post at that, because there's a healthy baby boy napping in his crib in the other room. And because of my csection, my beautiful surgery that saved us both from what could have happened, I can go see him and touch him and love him every single day for the rest of my life.
I couldn't be more grateful for that.